The Anonymous Us Project is a safety zone for real and honest insights regarding third party reproduction (sperm & egg donation, and surrogacy). We aim to share the experiences of voluntary and involuntary participants in these new reproductive technologies, while preserving the dignity and privacy for story-tellers and their loved ones. All stories are contributed anonymously because "anonymity in reproduction hides the truth, but anonymity in story-telling helps reveal the truth." Read More
There will be a massive recall on donated gametes and parental consent:
The great irony of people raising donor offspring saying that the process is not equivalent to child buying is that they are technically correct. People, their parts, their rights, freedoms and responsibilities to their offspring are not something that can be sold, given or purchased. You can have the effect of a sale or gift of reproductive rights or parental rights when parties to the agreement keep their respective promises. If they don't keep their promises then, just as they like to say, compensation to the donor is only for the time and trouble to harvest their gametes and nothing else.
Donor agreements say that the donor was not paid in exchange for their gametes or in exchange for parental control, custody or title of their offspring. The donor's promises to let others control their gametes or raise their children are not promises they were paid to make nor keep - those are voluntary promises that the gamete recipient has no right to rely upon. It is a mighty big gamble by recipients paying so much money knowing that they may pull consent to reproduce or pull consent to allow others to raise their kids.
The only promises they had to keep in order to get paid were promises to comply with rules and regulations during the harvesting of their gametes. After that their promises are not ones they are bound by law to keep. Some may feel the gamete provider would have an ethical obligation to keep their promise to the individuals who paid to have their gametes harvested while others may feel they have an ethical obligation not to abandon their parental responsibilities to their offspring when born.
The agreements donors sign all clearly state that parties agree to be bound to the terms of the agreement as if they were legally enforceable even thought they are not legally bound to do so, and may be found to be against public policy. Most donor agreements have a provision where if the agreement is found to have been illegal the donor agrees to have their parental rights and authority terminated in court and agrees to give their child up for step parent adoption or full adoption if both bio parents were gamete donors. This provision highlights the fact that adoption in court is the only way for a person to have legal parental authority over someone else's offspring and that the donor agreement is an attempt to circumvent that legal step and make it appear as if the step parent was a biological parent by naming them on the birth record. In reality this type of donor arrangement is a black market adoption which the parties agree to legalize in court if they are ever busted. All the gamete donor has to do is bust themselves and recipients out to shatter the illusion of them being the parents of the gamete donors child. It's true, it's been done, and it will be done again by people who can't live with themselves for what they did to their own kids. They won't do it to take anything away from the recipients of their gametes but they'll do it to give something back to their children they had no business taking in the first place - their right to care and support of both bio parents and their right to be legal kin in their own bio families.
The other massive recall will simply be to the custody and control of their gametes and embryos created with their gametes. This is a simpler undertaking than retracting their parental consent as it does not require them going to court. All they have to do is notify the intermediary they contracted their services to and inform them to notify anyone who is in possession of their gametes or embryos created with their gametes that they withdraw consent to allow the embryos to be implanted and withdraw consent to the use of their gametes to create embryos or cause pregnancies. They have a legal right to a strict accounting of the whereabouts of all their gametes and embryos created with their gametes. They do not need to give any money back that they were paid because they were compensated only for the harvesting of their gametes and not for their reproductive rights not for control of their gametes and not for their agreement to reproduce with anyone. The withdraw of consent and recall of their gametes and embryos highlights the fact that they did not sell their gametes or their children they really are just donors who were compensated for their time and trouble during gamete harvesting. The agreement seems much less unethical when the donor withdraws consent.
As important as it is to educate men and women to prevent them from becoming gamete donors the way movies like Anonymous Father's Day and Eggsploitation did, it is equally important to educate former gamete and embryo donors that they can recall their genetic material from circulation and withdraw consent to the use of their gametes in the creation of embryos and they can withdraw consent to the implantation of embryos already created with their gametes and they can withdraw consent to abandon their parental obligations outside of a court of law in a formal adoption. It's important to educate former donors that they have the ability to give back what their agreements took away from any existing offspring born to gamete donor recipients - they can give their offspring back their proper identities by getting named on their birth certificates if they wish to pursue that consent withdraw as well. Donor Offspring have not suffered an irreversible loss resulting from their forms of conception - they have suffered a preventable or reversible loss of rights and identity because of what their bio parents did after they were born. People that can't have kids have not had kids this way, it's all an illusion and really they are not who society needs to look to in order to put a stop to the harms done to donor offspring. The whole process is outside the control of people who can't have kids; the whole house of cards rests on the actions and consent of the bio parents who made the promises not to raise their kids.
We need to educate former gamete donors and those raising their offspring to know the difference between a real gamete donation agreement that reads like this:
and black market adoption agreements that read like this:
And we need to remind them that the gamete donor's participation and promises are all voluntary and retractable. They were and always will be the parents of their own offspring with the ability to withdraw their consent at any time. As the parents of their own offspring they have the sole ability to disrupt the illusion of control they permitted others to have.
Cryobanks are afraid of donors breaking these promises but they all have consent withdrawal forms. Too bad for the cryo bank if they have to refund money to their customers they never should have tried to sell donated cells to people knowing that the donor could retract consent. It's not Goodwill or the Salvation Army and their genes are not like an old pair of Levi's.
My dearest daughter,
I'm not your "donor." I'm your father. I think of you every day. You & I knew each other for the first 3 years of your life. I know a lot about you. But I doubt you remember me.
What, if anything, have you been told about me? Maybe it's a sweet story about how much you were wanted. Or maybe it's an untrue story about how I wasn't interested in you and didn't want to see you. I can only imagine the lies you've been told.
Have your lesbian "moms" mentioned that you would run to me when you got hurt? Have they told you that I sent you cards and gifts on a regular basis? Or that they threw these gifts in the trash and never gave them to you? Have they mentioned that they hired lawyers and got rid of me? No?
I continue writing cards to you, and buying gifts. I'm saving them for you. One day you'll have a lot of packages to open.
When you decide to find me it will take you 5 seconds. Maybe you've already found me, and have been too afraid or freaked out to contact me. I can understand that. But please do it.
You have aunts and uncles and cousins you don't know about. They all love you, even though they've never met you. One of your cousins is your age. I hope you will meet her soon.
I'm sorry we haven't seen each other, as I was promised we would. Maybe I could have done things differently, but I did the best I could at the time. I hope and pray that you will want to know and love me, as I do you.
I love you.